My children, I am writing this so that you won’t sin. But if you do sin, Jesus Christ always does the right thing, and he will speak to the Father for us. Christ is the sacrifice that takes away our sins and the sins of all the world’s people.
When we obey God, we are sure that we know him. But if we claim to know him and don’t obey him, we are lying and the truth isn’t in our hearts. We truly love God only when we obey him as we should, and then we know that we belong to him.
1 John 2:1-5
I sometimes hear Christians discuss "how to be saved" with the emphasis on what is the "bare minimum" that is required of you for you to know that you are indeed on the path toward heaven. They call that list the "things that are essential" to your salvation. Then they also have a list of things that are good but not "essential."
When the "Rich young Ruler" tried to have that discussion with Jesus, the Lord confounded this sincere and moral young man with "one more thing" that he needed to do. Jesus told him to sell everything he had and give the money to the poor and then come and follow Jesus. Jesus confronted the young man with the fact that the assurance of "eternal life" would cost him everything that he had here on this earth.
Which of the commands of the Lord are optional? These verses say that if we don't obey Him we don't love Him! Can you not love Jesus and still be saved? Can you ignore any of the things He has spoken to your heart and still rest assured that you are "right with God?"
I would challenge you and myself to consider not the question of how "little" can I do, but rather how "much" can I do for the Lord Jesus? Let my goal be not the minimum, but rather the maximum in being obedient to Him.
"Lord Jesus, open my ears today to hear something else that you desire for me to do. I want to be obedient today to even the "smallest" desire that You have! Give me another opportunity to show You that my Love for You, Lord is real! And may You Jesus be praised forever. Amen."